Gold. Rare, beautiful, and unique. Treasured as a store of value for thousands of years, it is an important and secure asset. It has maintained its long term value, is not directly affected by the economic policies of individual countries and doesn’t depend on a ‘promise to pay’.
Completely free of credit risk, although it bears a market risk gold has always been a secure refuge in unsettled times. Its ‘safe haven’ attributes attract wise investors. Gold has proved itself to be an effective way to manage wealth.
For at least 200 years the price of gold has kept pace with inflation. Another important reason to invest in gold is its consistent delivery within a portfolio of assets. Its performance tends to move independently of other investments and of key economic indicators. Even a small weighting of gold in an investment portfolio can help reduce overall risk.
Most investment portfolios are invested primarily in traditional financial assets such as stocks and bonds. The reason for holding diverse investments is to protect the portfolio against fluctuations in the value of any single asset class.
Portfolios that contain gold are generally more robust and better able to cope with market ncertainties than those that don’t. Adding gold to a portfolio introduces an entirely different class of asset.
Gold is unusual because it is both a commodity and a monetary asset. It is an ‘effective diversifier’ because its performance tends to move independently of other investments and key economic indicators.
Studies have shown that traditional diversifiers (such as bonds and alternative assets) often fail during times of market stress or instability. Even a small allocation of gold has been proven to significantly improve the consistency of portfolio performance during both stable and unstable financial periods.
Gold improves the stability and predictability of returns. It is not correlated with other assets because the gold price is not driven by the same factors that drive the performance of other assets. Gold is also significantly less volatile than practically all equity indices.
The value of gold, in terms of real goods and services that it can buy,has remained remarkably stable. In contrast, the purchasing power of many currencies has generally declined.
Traditionally, access to the gold market has been through: investment in physical gold, usually as gold coins or small bars,or, for larger quantities, by way of the over the counter market; gold futures and options; gold mining equities, often packaged in gold-oriented mutual funds.